Your Heroine, Wendy Darlin, is a Lara Croft / female Indiana Jones type character!
Can you tell us a bit about your background as a writer?
Thank you for inviting me, today. It’s lovely to be here. I’m a big fan of apes and have even dated a few LOL
I’m a single mother, living on the edge in Florida. My writing history is diverse. I started an underground newspaper in grade school and was threatened with excommunication by the nuns. I was fortunate enough to take part in writing workshops with Stephen King, Robert B. Parker, and James Michener. I enjoy doing playful things with language, blending two distinct words to create a new word. If I’m laughing out loud when I’m writing, then I know I’ve hit the mark.
When you’re a freelance writer with a quirky sense of humor, being in the right place at the right time helps a lot. If I just stand still for five minutes… wham! Something funny and worth writing about will happen to me. I’ve accidentally sky dived, been elected president of the Japan American Society (I’m not Japanese), been stalked by crazies, and ran off with a real life White Rabbit.
For six years I traveled the United States listening to men reveal their darkest secrets for my book, The Adventures of a Love Investigator. When I was finished with my adventure, I realized the only man I should have interviewed was Lewis Carroll, unfortunately he was long gone. So I set out to pay homage to his brilliance by re-telling Alice in Wonderland in a contemporary setting. The result is The Secret Diary of Alice in Wonderland, Age 42 and Three-Quarters ~ a comedy mystery that takes place between Miami and London.
Can you tell us about your books? Who or what were your inspirations? How many have you written? Are they related to each other?
I have three criminally funny fables: The Secret Diary of Alice in Wonderland, Wendy and the Lost Boys, and Zo White and the Seven Morphs. Each novel is a quirky take on a classic. They do not follow the original story lines. The books are about contemporary women who find themselves doing battle with thugs, swindlers, and email lotharios. Each heroine prevails in her own stumbling way. She grows through her tale and brings down the bad guys. The books are loaded with references to the original fairy tales.
As I wrote the criminally funny fables, Wendy Darlin seemed to develop a continuing separate storyline and broke loose from the pack. She’s a real estate broker for millionaires in Miami. The market for mansions is slow. To supplement her income, Wendy finds herself assisting Dr. Roger Jolley, a Johnny Depp-type archaeologist, as he returns stolen antiquities to tombs and museums. Wendy becomes a Tomb Hunter, starts her own series, becomes romantically involed with Roger Jolley. Her first three adventures are available in a box set:Wendy Darlin Tomb Raider.
In her first adventure, Wendy and the Lost Boys, she and Roger are kidnapped and held on a super yacht while in search of stolen Egyptian icons. Her second adventure, London Broil, finds our gal in London hunting the last missing Egyptian icon. The clock ticks as she slugs her way through an assortment of wacky villains, is held captive over a fish ‘n’ chips shop, and rescues Roger. On her third adventure she joins Roger in Cairo Caper. They are in search of Cleopatra’s tomb, one-step ahead of Russian black market antiquity thieves.
I like to think of Wendy Darlin as a combination Indiana Jones and Lucille Ball.
Are you working on a new book? How long does it usually take you to write a book?
I’m working on Wendy’s fourth adventure… Miami Mummies. “Sitting” mummies have been discovered in Miami. Wendy and Roger investigate, uncovering a master mummy-thief, and a bit of the paranormal. It usually takes me six months to write a book. Physical comedy is tough to script. It relies on timing, snappy one-liners, and hidden clues. Readers love finding the little jokes and references tucked away throughout my stories.
All of my books are available on both Amazon Kindle and on Audible books.
What is your favorite or least favorite part of writing?
My favorite part is once the characters take over. I think sometimes that I’ve stored every episode of I Love Lucy and Looney Tunes in the back of my brain. They come gushing out in amazing ways. The least favorite is editing. That’s why I have at least two or three editors comb through my manuscripts once they are done.
If you could meet any book character, who would it be, and what would you do with them?
There is a little known book called Ghost by Marsha Parker. I believe she only wrote the one book back in 1982. Toward the end of the book, the American heroine is living near a small country inn in France. During the night she meets with her lover from a previous life time. He walks her into a field, lays down a sheep skin, and makes love to her. Then he disappears. I would love to change places with her and experience that love scene. It is sooo beautiful.
What books or authors have most influenced you in your own writing?
I like the early Janet Evanovich, Carl Haaisen, Elmore Leonard, Raymond Chandler, Robert B. Parker. I like cryptic, snarky dialogue.
Do you have a writing routine, a special place where you go to do your writing, or a certain time of day? Do you listen to music while you write, and if so, what kind of music?
I think we all have our high-creative times. I’m great at five in the morning and late afternoon. I shrivel up at night. And I must have complete silence when I write. I wish I could write to music, but I’m easily distracted.
How do you get past writers’ block or distractions like the internet?
I’ve never had writer’s block…but that darn internet (said through clenched teeth) is one heck of a distraction. It’s like having a toddler tugging at your knee begging for attention. I’m still trying to break my addiction.
Thank you so much for inviting me. Wendy sends her best. She couldn’t be here as she is wrestling mummies in Miami.
About the Author
Barbara Silkstone is the best-selling author of the Wendy Darlin Tomb Raider series that includes: Wendy and the Lost Boys, London Broil, Cairo Caper, Wendy Darlin Tomb Raider Boxed Set. Her Criminally Funny Fables Romantic Suspense series includes: The Secret Diary of Alice in Wonderland, Age 42 and Three-Quarters; Wendy and the Lost Boys; Zo White and the Seven Morphs. For a squirt of paranormal comedy try: Cold Case Morphs. True fiction fan? Try: The Adventures of a Love Investigator.
Silkstone’s writing has been described as “perfectly paced and pitched – shades of Janet Evanovich and Carl Hiaasen – without seeming remotely derivative. Fast moving action that shoots from the hip with bullet-proof characterization.”
Click on your Amazon country book links below:
The Secret Diary of Alice in Wonderland
Wendy and the Lost Boys
Wendy Darlin Tomb Raider Boxed Set
Zo White and the Seven Morphs
COLD CASE MORPHS A Comedy Mystery
Criminally Funny Fables
The Adventures of a Love Investigator